Chapter 176 - Five Hundred Years Old Sword Intent
Since an Astral Reaching Realm martial artist had abruptly shown up, none of the others on the deck dared to speak at this moment, so as to not accidentally offend him; a few cowardly rich men even sneakily headed back into their own cabins.
Seeing this, Black Crow Taoist Priest grinned and said, "You may continue chatting, I won't bite."
Xu Changjian grinned as well and said, "Black Crow Taoist Priest is one of the few most respected senior martial artists to me, you don't need to be afraid of him at all."
Hearing Xu Changjian's words, the others slightly loosened their agitated face, yet, they still did not dare to talk loudly, only whispering to each other.
"This is the very first time that I meet an Astral Reaching Realm martial artist, I wonder where this Black Crow Taoist Priest comes from."
"Even Captain Xu has been acting so respectful to him, he must be ridiculously powerful!"
"The aura released by this Black Crow Taoist is way too great, as immeasurable as a bottomless river. Compared to him, those powerful martial artists in our institutions are merely ordinary people!"
"Tell me about that! The higher a martial artist's grade goes, the wider the gap between him and the lower grades martial artists would be. It's said that an Astral Reaching Realm martial artist could easily crush an advanced Clasping Yuan Realm martial artist with a single finger!"
Ye Chen observed Black Crow Taoist Priest for a moment then turned away as he thought, 'He's indeed unimaginably powerful. I can sense the vibration of his Zhen Yuan that is as powerful as a surging river and as deep as the ocean. Unlike Clasping Yuan Realm martial artists' Zhen Qi vibrations, Zhen Yuan vibrations of Astral Reaching Realm martial artists are spreading in the form of spirals, that seem to be able to pulverize everything. This Black Crow Taoist Priest is more powerful than Thunder Freer by at least thirty percent.'
"I could never meet so many powerful people if I stayed back in the Windy Nation," murmured Ye Chen to himself, "Firstly, Thunder Freer, now this Black Crow Taoist Priest, both of them are legendary powerful martial artists who have been admired by others."
Standing straight on ship's bow, Black Crow Taoist Priest turned around and asked Xu Changjian, "Do you have any booze? Bring me some if you do!"
"Sure, give me a second!" Xu Changjian responded and hurriedly walked into the cabin for booze.
Soon, he walked out smilingly, then threw a bottle to Black Crow Taoist Priest and said, "Senior, this is the famous Centurial Pear Blossom Wine, of our South Chamber of Commerce."
Black Crow Taoist Priest caught the bottle in the air and excitedly pulling out the bottle plug as he chugged the wine. He began murmuring, "Good, good, pure and thick, I might purchase hundreds of bottles of this from your Chamber of Commerce later."
"Ah ha ha! Our Chamber of Commerce manager will surely give you a great discount."
The Ocean Beast kept moving towards north and soon sailed for another two or three thousand miles. Gradually, the Wild Goose Falling River became narrower and narrower. The width of the river had already narrowed down to around a hundred miles, from five hundred, or even seven hundred to eight hundred miles. If you were standing on the Ocean Beast's deck right now, you could already see waves of mountain ranges and those big, thriving harbour cities by the river.
Black Crow Taoist Priest turned his head to the right front after throwing the wine bottle into the river, then he laughed out loud and said, "It has already been ten years since the last time we met, today, we can finally have a good, serious fight!"
Seemingly a response to Black Crow Taoist Priest's words, from a mountain in the river bank in the right front that was over a hundred miles away from the ship, an enormous, dazzling and raging flame stream suddenly darted into the sky, letting out a scorching red, sunshine-like fiery light, which was casted upon the glistening river surface.
"Haha, I'm leaving!"
Said Black Crow Taoist Priest to Gao Changjian while an enormous pair of wings stretched out from his back, then flicked; along with which, he directly flew up into the air, darted towards the flame stream. In the air, a dark, thick black air swirled around his body, giving a vigorous and bold aura.
"Goodbye, dear senior!" Shouted Xu Changjian.
Ye Chen narrowed his eyes. From the swooshing flame stream, he saw a faint human silhouette. Technically, he didn't truly see that, he had only grasped the great sense of power released by that person with his soul power, and formed a human silhouette in his mind; just like a blind man constructing the surrounding environment that he had been staying in for many years in his mind.
"Another Astral Reaching Realm martial artist." Ye Chen enthusiastically said after letting out a long breath.
"Captain Xu, are the pair of wings of Black Crow Taoist Priest transformed from his Zhen Yuan, like one of those Astral Reaching Realm martial artists' abilities you've mentioned before?" Once Black Crow Taoist Priest left, the others were instantly freed from the great pressure exuded by him, and some of them asked questions immediately.
Xu Changjian grinned and responded, "Zhen Yuan solidification is indeed an ability possessed by Astral Reaching Realm martial artists, however, none of them would use this ability unless they had to. You can think of it this way, all Clasping Yuan Realm martial artists are able to temporarily transform their Zhen Qi into certain objects, but compared to martial artists who are proficient in certain Zhen Qi solidifying arts, who can be more powerful?"
"Martial artists who are proficient in certain Zhen Qi solidifying arts are surely more powerful! For ordinary Clasping Yuan Realm martial artists, transforming the Zhen Qi into weapons then launching the attacks is no different from direct attack, it's just more complicated."
"Exactly, this principle also works for Astral Reaching Realm martial artists. The pair of wings of Black Crow Taoist Priest was actually created from a martial art that he has mastered called Great Black Crow Art, which is much more powerful than ordinary Astral Reaching Realm martial artists' Zhen Yuan solidifying ability. In addition to greatly increasing the movement speed, this art can also raise the circulating speed of a martial artist's Zhen Yuan. It's one of the most powerful martial arts possessed by the Flying Devil Martial School."
"Flying Devil Martial School? Do you mean that rank 6 institution of the Black Dragon Empire?"
"Ah! Black Crow Taoist Priest is a Flying Devil Martial School's martial artist! So that is where he comes from!"
All those people were smart and knowledgeable that from Captain Xu's words, they immediately learned about Black Crow Taoist Priest's background, and all popped their eyes out in shock. In their eyes, all rank 6 institutions were legendarily mighty powers. If rank 9-7 institutions could be counted as big institutions, rank 6 institutions can definitely be seen as supreme institutions, after all, any rank 6 institution could easily destroy lower ranked institutions, or even a relatively small nation.
Under the watchful eyes of everyone who had been standing on deck, the mountain, where the great flame stream had bursted from, suddenly shattered into pieces; overwhelmingly powerful shockwaves visibly spread out towards every direction.
"Black Crow Taoist Priest is fighting against someone!"
"He shattered a genuine mountain with a single move! That's terrifying!"
Ye Chen wanted to observe the battle between two powerful Astral Reaching Realm martial artists using his soul power, however, they had both moved exceptionally swift, that within a single moment, each of them had already launched more than a hundred moves, and Ye Chen's soul power couldn't possibly react that fast; If he forcibly did that, he would only drive himself crazy.
The Ocean Beast didn't slow down, sailing for another five-hundred mile in only half an hour, leaving that shattered mountain behind; soon, the mountain had disappeared from sight.
Ten days later.
The river's width narrowed down once again into fifty from sixty miles.
This morning, Ye Chen pushed the cabin door open, walked out and took a big gasp of fresh air.
"In twenty days of bitter practice, I've finally broken through the eighth-level of the Great Mystery Art. By now, the quality of my Zhen Qi has already surpassed the Zhen Qi that was generated by a low-ranked Earth Realm art, but the quantity is still a bit less." Ye Chen hadn't practised on any low-ranked Earth Realm art, but he had met many Clasping Yuan Realm martial artists who did, therefore, he could easily find out the general degree of the eighth-level of the Great Mystery Art by comparing himself to them.
Ye Chen raised his head and gazed afar; he saw a perfectly straight gorge which was faintly visible in the front.
In the afternoon, all passengers had gathered onto the deck, enjoying the warm sunlight.
Xu Changjian pointed at the front and said, "We will see the most famous scene of this Wild Goose Falling River from three to four miles away, called Natural Moat Gorge."
"Natural Moat Gorge! Is it that one which used to be a mountain but then been chopped into a gorge by a man?!" The middle-aged man with the curly beard couldn't help but yell out in a badly shocked face.
Chopped by a man?!
Ye Chen silently exclaimed. Even from a great distance, he could already see that enormous, steep gorge that was even ten times more gigantic than the Sky Cloud Martial School's Windy Mountain. 'Who could've chopped such a lofty mountain into two?! He must be unbelievably powerful!'
Xu Changjian continued, "Five-hundred years ago, this Natural Moat Gorge was not a gorge at all, neither was it called the Natural Moat Gorge, instead, it was a mountain named Sky Pillar Mountain which stood beside this Wild Goose Falling River and was a hundred and eight thousand meters tall, occupying a huge area that had a radius of thousands of miles. One day, two Life and Death Realm martial artist started a great fight in this place, one of them swung his sword down and directly hacked the Sky Pillar Mountain into two. One-half of the mountain was straightly pushed right into the middle of this river, becoming an enormous gorge that is over ten miles wide, which had also created a new water channel that is thousands of miles long. Now it's called Natural Moat Gorge Water Channel."
"Two Life and Death Realm emperors started a fight here, and the Battle Emperor had directly hacked the Sky Pillar Mountain into two!"
Ye Chen gasped deeply in shock.
The Ocean Beast moved closer and closer to the gorge, along with that, people on the ship finally saw the Natural Moat Gorge clearly.
This gorge was around one hundred and seventy meters tall, and was formed by two cliffs. The outer sides of both cliffs were rugged mountainsides, while the inner sides were perfectly straight and smooth planes. Just like Xu Changjian said, this extremely straight gorge indeed looked like a mountain that had been chopped into two by a person. The two cliffs that formed the valley had the same height, while the inner space of the gorge was as straight as a ruler, if someone pushed the two cliffs back together, they could surely reform into a lofty mountain.
"We can't get into the Sky Moat Gorge, let's just pass through the main water chamber instead." Every time the ship sailed past this area, Xu Changjian would always remind those South Chamber of Commerce members to avoid getting into the gorge, he did exactly the same this time.
"Don't worry captain, we don't want to die yet."
The South Chamber of Commerce member who had been controlling the steering wheel grinned and responded.
Ye Chen couldn't help but ask, "What's so special about this gorge that we can't pass through it?"
"You'll soon find out." Xu Changjian said while rubbing his own chin.
Sooner or later, two separated water channels appeared in front of the Ocean Beast, one led to the Natural Moat Gorge, and the other, led to the original river channel.
The Ocean Beast was now very close to the Natural Moat Gorge, which had soared right into the clouds; compared with the gorge itself, the Ocean Beast was even tinier than an ant. Such a great contrast could easily confuse a person and grow a strange fear in his or her heart.
Suddenly, without any sign, an extremely fierce stream of power flashed over from the Natural Moat Gorge, shrouding the Ocean Beast entirely.
Everybody on the ship couldn't help but take a few steps back, while their faces turned pale.
Surprisingly, Ye Chen, who only knew a little more about martial arts, suffered even worse than those rich people that he abruptly coughed a full mouthful of blood out on the deck.
Xu Changjian gave a dumbfounded look at Ye Chen, wondering how that happened. Ye Chen was clearly a Clasping Yuan Realm martial artist, how come he couldn't stand the fierce power released by the gorge? Such a thing had never happened before, besides, the ship was still a small distance away from the gorge, the effect of that power shouldn't be so strong.
But after a brief astonishment, he stopped wondering about it, instead, he said, "The reason why we can't go through the gorge is that, when the Battle Emperor chopped the Sky Pillar Mountain open back then, his fierce and piercing sword intent has remained in the gorge all this time. The sword intent has been lingering inside the gorge, therefore, if we rashly get into it, that sword intent would definitely crush our bodies and our souls. In other words, we would all die immediately. I heard some Astral Reaching Realm martial artists have entered the gorge before, but no one ever saw them come out, I assume they were all dead already."
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